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Dear Editor: How to reform Port of Spain in 22 steps

“Create legislation to tackle food waste, convert vacant lots to green spaces, modernise the Central Market, acquire or repurpose abandoned buildings, close the QPS entrance/exit opposite Dundonald Street… partner with businesses to provide free WiFi!”

The following Letter to Editor with 22 steps to reform Port of Spain was submitted by Alana Morton to the Port of Spain City Corporation as part of the Local Government Reform Public Consultation in early 2015:

Photo: Former Port of Spain mayor Raymond Tim Kee (centre) and then deputy mayor Keron Valentine (fourth row, fourth from left) pose with the city's councillors and aldermen. (Courtesy Port of Spain City Corporation)
Photo: Former Port of Spain mayor Raymond Tim Kee (centre) and then deputy mayor Keron Valentine (fourth row, fourth from left) pose with the city’s councillors and aldermen.
(Courtesy Port of Spain City Corporation)

To Whom It May Concern,

My name is Alana Morton and I live in Cascade which falls outside of the POS City Corporation’s boundaries but I am a daily user/visitor/commuter of the City of Port-of-Spain and so I have a vested interest in seeing the City of Port-of-Spain improve and grow to the benefit of all the burgesses.

As such I have a number of suggestions to share with you as follows which can also be applied to all the other Corporations where possible:

1. Create Legislation to tackle Food Waste similar to what has been recently passed in France, Italy and other places. This legislation will target Restaurants, Supermarkets, Hotels and other purveyors of food who routinely discard food which may be near expiration or shelf life.

It has been found that often times the majority of such food can be used for consumption but instead it ends up in the garbage. Food Banks can be set up which can distribute the food stuff to those most in need and hungry in our City/ District such as homeless shelters and the impoverished among us. Waste can be reduced and the hungry can be fed.

“Wasting food is not only an ethical and economic issue but it also depletes the environment of limited natural resources.”

Photo: School children waste food in Los Angeles. (Copyright LA Times)
Photo: School children waste food in Los Angeles.
(Copyright LA Times)

2. Vacant Lots that have been abandoned by their owners and seized by the Corporation or Vacant Lots already owned by the Corporation, if not already earmarked for development, should be converted to green spaces. These green spaces, especially in residential areas, are important for the mental and physical well-being of our burgesses.

Studies have shown that areas where green spaces are accessible to residents, crime rates are lower.  These Green Spaces can be maintained by employing person(s) from the community or local CEPEP team. They can also be put to use as Community Urban Gardens. In urban neighbourhoods where space is a commodity, some residents may appreciate a few raised and boxed beds for gardening of vegetables or even a few chickens, rabbits or a bee hive (run by a bee keeper).

Such Urban Farming activity can contribute to local food security and perhaps spawn some entrepreneurship and job creation in our urban neighbourhoods as well as shrink the grocery bills of citizens. The Corporation(s) can partner with the Ministry of Agriculture and corporate entities for technical skills, education programs, plants, etc. where needed and to set up model urban farming spaces.

Fruit Trees can also be planted which would boost our supply of local fruits which have been becoming rare in recent times. The fruits produced by these trees can be free to pick by the residents. Currently it is often less costly to buy imported fruits such as apples, pears and plums than to buy local fruits such as sapodilla, caimete, pommecythere, sour sop, plums etc.

Photo: A young woman sells at the market.
Photo: A young woman sells at the market.

3. Modernise the Central Market. URGENTLY. The sale of fish/seafood, meat, poultry and fresh produce (to a lesser extent) as it currently obtains at the Market is unsafe and unsanitary at best. Often times, conditions do not meet basic food handling and food safety requirements. The areas (Fish and Produce Market) are open to flies, heat, dust and vehicle exhaust. Fish, seafood and meats should be kept chilled and there is no ice or chilling facilities available to vendors. This situation is a public health disaster waiting to happen.

The space currently occupied by the Central Market is large enough to accommodate a multi storey parkade which can be used as a park and ride facility during the week and provides parking for the users of the market on market days. A new, modern, air-conditioned commercial space can be constructed, complete with refrigeration facilities, ice machines, meat saws and grinders (and other necessary equipment and facilities), areas for washing produce for sale, kiosks for vendors, craft market and restaurant/food court. Consider partnering with the TTHTI, UTT and other agencies that can provide food handling training and training in proper butchering techniques to the vendors.

A modern Farmers Market in the city can also encourage food tourism and be a source of employment and economic activity which favours our “buy local” drive. As it is, many people don’t patronize the market because they view it as ‘dirty’, ‘unsafe’ and unhealthy so they resign themselves to paying more for the convenience and enhanced environment of the supermarket.

Photo: A vendor operates around the Queen's Park Savannah, Port of Spain. (Copyright Caribbean Beat)
Photo: A vendor operates around the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain.
(Copyright Caribbean Beat)

4. Street Vending is illegal and it contributes to vermin, traffic, pavement clutter, the flourishing of petty crimes and a general grimy feel to the city. The law needs to be enforced and any new vendors need to be decisively and immediately dealt with.

5. Acquire or repurpose empty buildings such as the old Worker’s Bank on the corner of Duncan Street and Independence Square and convert them to commercial spaces for the existing street vendor population.  Some of these newly designated commercial spaces can also be used for vendors of fresh produce to provide Green Markets access to denizens everyday (as currently obtains on lower Charlotte Street, George Street, etc.) Distributing them around the city also gives them greater opportunities for market penetration.

6. The Food Court at the QPS should be provided with proper sanitary conveniences (perhaps for a fee charged to the vendors) and an agreement for first preference access to commercial space if/when the Cultural Centre is constructed.  They also need to be regularly inspected to affirm food and health safety, proper disposal of spent cooking oil and other trash/garbage, etc. to avoid further problems with the rodent/vermin population.

7. Close the QPS entrance/exit opposite to Dundonald Street.  Too many motor vehicle accidents occur there as drivers exit the QPS at this point and attempt to drive straight across to Dundonald Street. Enforce the No Parking Rules on the Pitch Walk in the vicinity of the Fredrick Street Entrance.

Photo: The Drag Brothers showcase their leather sandals. (Copyright Discover TNT)
Photo: The Drag Brothers showcase their leather sandals.
(Copyright Discover TNT)

8. Develop the People’s Mall site.  This will provide further relief for street vendors and new space for new businesses.  It should be a multi-storey space, complete with underground parking for deliveries and the tenants at least. Ensure at least two spaces are designated for green markets.

9. Lobby for regulations and legislation to compel and promote Recycling and waste reduction. Set up Recycling collection depots and bins in and around the Corporation(s) to encourage a culture of recycling, waste reduction and personal responsibility for the environment.

We have one of the highest carbon footprints per capita in the world. These are records we should be ashamed of, alarmed at and it should propel us to work towards drastically reduceing our waste. Hefty fines for breaches/non-compliance should be imposed. We should also consider the approach used in Sweden and Norway where what isn’t recycled is incinerated and the heat energy produced is used to power plants etc.

Or, conversely, we can sell trash to Norway and Sweden. These actions should go a long way to reducing our waste profile and dependence on our overloaded landfills. Sweden currently recycles or otherwise reuses 99% of their waste; only 1% reaches the landfills. Let’s aim for a zero waste society that is environmentally aware and responsible.

Photo: Workers install energy renewable solar panels on a rooftop. (Courtesy ucsusa.org)
Photo: Workers install energy renewable solar panels on a rooftop.
(Courtesy ucsusa.org)

10. All Government/State Agencies and Schools should be mandated to recycle wastes where possible, including e-wastes, plastics, paper, metals, glass, etc. Set the example to the nation. Toxic wastes such as toners and printer ink cartridges/ copiers lead batteries and other toxic wastes need to be handled and disposed of properly. Work with dealers such as Massy, who import the majority of these products, to have disposal depots and collection bins. They in turn can source ways of sending these items to locations where they are dealt with by the manufacturers. Incentives can be formulated to help them offset costs of exporting these toxic waste materials.

11. At least once per month or maybe every two months, disposal of bulky wastes such as mattresses, large appliances, derelict vehicles, etc. could be facilitated by the Corporation.  Or, conversely, provide access to burgesses to drop-off points or collection depots for such waste.

12. Increase fines for littering and employ Litter Wardens to patrol and enforce the law. They should not only patrol our streets and urban areas but also our parks, recreational areas such as the Water Front, beaches, etc. Litter Wardens should also be empowered to enforce public Urination Laws and should patrol areas such as Western Main Road, St James and Ariapita Avenue at night, especially Thursday to Sunday.

A cleaner city and cleaner recreational areas (parks, beaches, rivers, hiking trails, etc) that doesn’t smell of stale urine and doesn’t have random trash scattered about will be more attractive to both locals and tourists.

Photo: Garbage on Queen Street in Port of Spain. (Copyright Trinidad Guardian)
Photo: Garbage on Queen Street in Port of Spain.
(Copyright Trinidad Guardian)

13. Provide more Parking facilities and introduce the Parking Meter System. Dock Road can support another parkade for instance.

14. Improve Wheel Chair Access on the city’s pavements. The majority of what is present is grossly inadequate. Also, pavement heights need to be standardised.  Some of our differently-abled burgesses don’t use wheel chairs but also have great difficulty navigating the pavements. Holes and sign post stumps need to be addressed urgently. These obstacles are a danger to all pedestrians and expose the Corporation to legal liability.

15. Consider working with the utilities to bury overhead cables within the City including along major thoroughfares such as Ariapita Avenue. The tangle of overhead wires is not only unattractive but poses a danger should we be hit by a major storm or earthquake. Further, the proliferation of overhead lines can impede certain types of vehicles traversing some streets. Having buried electricity and communication lines means we may be able to maintain some communication channels during a disaster.

16. Work with the City Business Community (as is done in many cities around the world) to provide free Wi-Fi access citywide.

Photo: DOMA president Gregory Aboud. (Courtesy YouTube)
Photo: DOMA president Gregory Aboud.
(Courtesy YouTube)

17. Each Corporation should have a hotline for burgesses to call and a webpage to report issues. The respondents should be able to then direct reports to the relevant City/Corporation departments for action/resolution. Callers can be provided with a reference number that they can use to check on the status of their report via the web. (Yes, Corporations need interactive websites!!)

18. Storm Water Management should be incorporated in all NEW buildings and retro fitting should be encouraged where possible. Legislation and an update to the building code needs to be done. This will help to reduce flooding in the city. Cisterns can also be set up to capture storm water and used for flushing toilets and other activities that do not require potable water supplies.

19. Consider an urban solar farm.

20. Place more garbage receptacles that encourage sorting/recycling, strategically around the city. Conduct a comprehensive marketing campaign. Bring Charlie back for instance.

21. Build a multi-storey carpark in Woodbrook that would be open 24/7 except for special days such as Christmas Day. This would alleviate parking issues in the Woodbrook area faced by residents, businesses and customers. Partner with the Woodbrook Businesses to provide a shuttle service that operates along Ariapita Avenue that would serve these businesses and provide parking for patrons when there are special events in the Hasley Crawford Stadium.

Photo: A female Trinidad and Tobago fan (centre) phones it in during a lull in action at the 2018 World Cup qualifier between Trinidad and Tobago and the United States on 17 November 2015. (Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)
Photo: A female Trinidad and Tobago fan (centre) phones it in during a lull in action at the 2018 World Cup qualifier between Trinidad and Tobago and the United States on 17 November 2015.
(Courtesy Allan V Crane/Wired868)

22. Contract Waste Disposal entities that can provide waste removal services using small vans or trucks in areas where the conventional garbage trucks cannot service. The smaller vehicles will be able to navigate the hilly areas and areas where streets are narrow.

This would reduce the need for communal garbage bins which tend to attract rodents, other vermin, stray dogs and cats. Residents that live near these communal bins have to contend not only with the rodents and other scavengers but also with the noxious odours emanating from these bins as well as trash drift when scavengers drag the trash around or the bin overflows. The areas around these bins can become unsightly and smelly fairly quickly.

Having a house to house garbage collection service may also help prevent dumping as some communal bins are not conveniently located for all residents and some persons unfortunately choose to discard their garbage in the nearest drain, river or other inappropriate area.

Photo: The bustling Charlotte Street in downtown Port of Spain. (Courtesy Flickr)
Photo: The bustling Charlotte Street in downtown Port of Spain.

I hope that my suggestions are given some consideration and maybe even applied to the new Local Government dispensation. I look forward to the changes as outlined in the Local Government manifesto.

 

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120 comments

  1. What does this have to do with Local Government!?

  2. Congratulations Alana Morton on these brilliant suggestions. I pray that they are seriously considered.

  3. First I suggest a visit to Hafen City in Germany, 20 Hectares of Land reclaimed from the sea, built over a 20 year period, learn how it should been done, it is an amazing feat of Engineering, Master Planning, Collaborative working, Community and social engagement , I was able to visit on several occasion, as part of my work; and I am highly impressed ( and that not easy done) the most important point is the use of multi disciplinary teams and National and local government commitment,Vision and Mind Set to deliver what is needed for the development of the City.

  4. All doable…..some in the short term, others in the longer term.

  5. Wouldn’t it be nice if 50% of what is suggested here is implemented.

  6. This place is a cesspool…what have our leadership done to this paradise. Loud trucks, lawlessness, reckless drivers and rampant crime. Trinidad is not a paradise but he sky is the same…just beautiful…I look up to the sky more often and less on the landscape as it is getting destroyed by unappreciated leaders and people.

  7. Preserve/refurbish our landmarks, allow for visitor walking tours around POS

  8. They really should consider making Charlotte street into a walking only street – it practically is already – there are vendor’s trucks parked on both sides and cars can’t drive any faster than walking pace anyway…

    • Or stop encouraging the illegal vending.

      The new Mayor has vowed to tackle it. I don’t see any of these major streets becoming pedestrian only plazas since we don’t have alleys that can provide back door access to the buildings/businesses for deliveries, Garbage disposal etc. Mixed in these areas are also non commercial office spaces, mainly government agencies. Also, we have areas of this city that many people fear to venture into. Making the main streets pedestrian areas will force traffic and pedestrians into these areas and I see problems. Add to that, the current set up of vending on Charlotte and other streets encourages vermin, the inability to properly clean the streets, petty crimes aided by the congestion and an uneasy truce between vendors and legitimate business.

      I suggest a census is first done to determine who the vendors are at this instant and what they sell. Once you are recorded there, no one new can be allowed to set up shop. We have several vacant lots around the city and unused buildings. East Side Plaza is underused. I would in the first instant use some of these vacant lots to create flea market and craft market type areas where these vendors can ply their trade off the streets. Ideally fresh produce should not be exposed to the vehicle exhaust as they are currently on Charlotte, Prince and George streets as they are now. Deposits of lead, hydrocarbons and other chemicals on your food is not good. Removing these vendors to designated areas should not oy be seen as stopping illegal vending but as a public health priority. Every vendor should pay a monthly rent for their allocated space to offset the costs of maintenance, utilities etc. Each vendor should also be tax compliant and their legal status in this country verified for those that are not native. Anyone not tax compliant or legally here needs to be dealt with accordingly.

      The government should reclaim the site of The People’s Mall, which is now an unpaved, uneven, muddy carpark/eyesore in the middle of the city with several ad-hoc vending structures on the perimeter. They should proceed with the planned construction of a commercial space with parking and lease spaces back to the vendors and anyone else that is interested in utilizing the space. The Richmond Street Parkade is a nice example of what could be achieved. I’d also make business incubation and management courses available to anyone interested through the Ministry of labor and small Enterprises to help these,vendors remain viable business and encourage growth.

    • Once you’ve cleaned up the current problem, any new Street vendors must be swiftly interdicted. There must be zero tolerance and enforcement of the law in order to deter future problems. If you want to vend, apply for a space at one of the flea markets. We as shoppers need to support the efforts by also being disciplined. If you wish to buy from a vendor, shop only in the designated areas. When we buy on the street, we aid and abet the illegal vending.

  9. Nice ideas, sadly though, new legislation won’t make any difference especially since TT has a severe problem of enforcing current legislation …in addition, one of the major reasons that local corporations are so hamstrung is that they depend on funding from the Central Governemnt to provide services at the local level. It would be a step forward if land and building taxes and other local utility charges went straight to the corporations, which is what happens in more advanced societies….

  10. When they moving the prison?

  11. Turn Fredrick, Queen, Charlotte and Henry st. in a pedestrian zone, with a nice even pavement (good drainage with clogging prevention, using porous brick tiles that let water seep into the ground instead of asphalt or concrete would be a great flood prevention), benches, some trees, and maybe arcades to shelter pedestrians from bursts of rain or harsh sun. Give designated areas to vendors, that should be chosen for a varied original supply of crafts and other original merchandize. There could be also spaces for street musicians (pan!!!!) so live music not only the CD pirates with their boom carts.

    • Those are some really good ideas. Thanks

    • I love the idea of a pedestrian zone there. It would make shopping in town much easier. When you think about it people who drive on those streets not are not really shoppers anyway. There should be an established route on the outskirts.

    • Lasana Liburd It would be even better if there would come some cycle lanes for the flat parts of POS, to encourage commuting on bike. And since I’m dreaming already bring back some of the old flavor of downtown POS, there are still many shops that have beautiful cast iron balconies, often hidden behind ugly shop signs in screaming colors. Bring some taste and peace for the eyes. Tourists would LOVE it. Trinis you have so much creativity and taste to make mas, use it for your capital, make POS beautiful again!

    • Thinking of a nice picturesque town called Whistler in Vancouver that we visited some years ago. Strictly pedestrian traffic with the paving stones and nice small shops all round. Lol….I dreaming too?

    • Oh …and I forgot the roadside cafes, where you can sit under some parasols and have a nice drink or coffee…you could do that by changing the gaping holes where buildings have been demolished and that are now held for ransom as ‘parking lots’ into ‘pop-up’ cafes, paint the ugly walls surrounding them with happy murals, clean the ground, plant some trees and flowers, and there you have a beautiful spot where you can rest from shopping, watch passers by, meet friends….get a little steelband to serenade on saturdays. It would even fill POS downtown with life after the shops close.

    • There are many towns like that in Europe. Cologne and Gillingham come to mind. Thing is the midday heat probably won’t make it feasible to cycle to and from work or around POS during your lunch break. Similarly outdoor cafes would be a tricky proposition around midday–although it might be possible with the right shade and stuff.
      The other ideas that factor in our heat are great.

    • I cycled a LOT in POS, many years, you always have free airco on a bike (and a lot of spectators)! 🙂 and you are so much faster than in any sweaty taxi! St. James- Fredrick st. 10 min.

    • Hahaha. Well, if your taxi driver is chinksing on the A/C… Then sure!

    • I’m rather going on my bike than standing in the heat and fumes by the road waiting for some taxi to get stuck in traffic.

    • Lasana Liburd …and normally you cycle to work in the morning and go home in the evening, not midday…

    • Frauke that’s for people who live within cycling distance from work. I would expect those to be in the minority.

    • Are there no people living in St. James, Woodbrook, Newtown, Cascade, Belmont, Success village, Long Circular, Maraval? At least that’s how far I used to ride. The rest is too dangerous because only accessible by high way. I’m sure if the infra structure of safe and separate bike lanes would be available a lot of young hip and health conscious people would start to use their bikes to work.

    • From St James to POS? Not sure how many people will sign up for that ride. Lol. But I do think it is a good idea and certainly healthy.
      I agree that the option should be there. Definitely our public needs to take better care of its health.

    • The problem with bike lanes is our narrow streets and quantum of vehicles tho…. Many drivers don’t appreciate cyclists… Its not only here…I’ve seen many a cyclist get bullied or worst by drivers in NYC..

    • Lasana Liburd I used to take the side roads, Robert st. instead of Tragarete or Ariapita, to avoid traffic and pollution. it works.

    • Not these days…. Way more cars on the roads now….

    • Alana Morton That is exactly why people need to start to use bikes, to fight congestion! All big cities world wide promote it now.

    • I wouldn’t ride a bike on our mean streets here…. I see the driving… Ijs

    • Don’t get me wrong. I actually looked at the Dutch and their cycling in school and I agree it’s a great practice…. But living here and in NYC, I see the carnage… Drivers just have no patience with cyclists…. And imagine, NYC has bike lanes on many streets but it’s still dangerous.

    • From what I’ve been reading, cyclists seem to have become frequent targets for road rage in the UK recently. And they can expect much less protection from the law in T&T.
      That’s no reason not to do it at all. But I think it would take a while before it catches on.
      Personally, I’m happy to see them implemented and I would applaud that move.

    • They did dedicate a lane on the QPS week nights and Sunday mornings for cyclists but the QPS is sufficiently wide to accommodate that, and still I see road rage directed at them….

    • Lasana Liburd I often have been thinking that one way to make more young people aware of the possibility of cycling is to introduce campus bikes at UWI. the campus is large and to move around a bike would be very convenient in that park-like environment. It is also safer than on the public road. Students would slowly adapt to cycling and may push to develop more lanes around St. Augustine. People have to learn that using a bike is not just for recreational purposes but a daily way to move from A to B.

    • Lasana Liburd I have never been attacked on T&T’s roads, more subjected to 1001 comments like: gyal, lookin sexy! and what ever…:-) It was like the whole of POS knew me on that bike, somebody even once asked me in town, where I had left my bike, since I was walking.

  12. Alana has always been sharp, but as brilliant as her suggestions are I fear they are no more than pearls to swine where our current crop of administrators and would be administrators are concerned.
    She is simply too progressive for their understanding.

  13. And please do not put a parking facility in the midst of the city, that is if you serious about tourism.

  14. Thank you wonderful suggestions and NOT costly

  15. I like these. Regarding the “cradle to the grave” waste disposal of toner/ink cartridges…I know that BOSS does this.

  16. Great suggestions, hope they use it

  17. I have some suggestions of my own:

    1) Point 15 regarding overhead lines. I grew up in the U.S. during the time when they transitioned from overhead lines to underground. The government facilitated this by passing a law with a deadline for the project to be completed and required all new developments to be underground from the start. Utilities were required to submit detailed plans and their progress was monitored.

    Presently there are plans to replace deteriorating storm drains in Port of Spain, requiring considerable excavation. This would present an ideal time to have overhead lines relocated.

    2) Charlotte Street has become a “Market Street” like it or not. I think the city needs to consider closing the street to thru traffic on market days, from Duke Street to Ind. Sq.

    3) Also consider that many other large cities that have grown up around narrow streets restrict delivery vehicles to certain times of day which are non-peak traffic traffic times. Delivery vehicles loading and unloading on city streets caused considerable congestion and poses a safety hazard to pedestrians.

    4) Create large multi-story car parks OUTSIDE the city, for example across from the Central Market, and provide shuttle services through town. Electric trams similar to the ones used in major amusement parks to transport people to/from parking areas, are energy efficient, avoid noise and air pollution, and can maneuver narrow streets easily.

    5) Restrict traffic in the City Limits during business hours to residents and commercial traffic only. Many cities in Europe have employed this to avoid congested streets.

    6) Pass laws prohibiting plastic bottles 1 liter and smaller. Paper based cartons can replace them. Give manufacturers a time table to transition, for example 3 years, so as not to be unreasonable. We create too much plastic which does not biodegrade, and clogs our river, oceans, and landfills.

    7) Use the aforementioned electric trams to transport people up and down Ariapita Ave at night and close the street to motor vehicles. In New Orleans, LA the famous Bourbon Street is open to motor vehicles during the day, but from evening until early morning barriers are put in place to prevent any vehicular traffic. It has proven to enhance the experience of the entertainment district.

    • Some very intriguing suggestions David. I’ve noticed that there are some bicycle propelled carriages on Ariapita at night. Those entrepreneurs might be encouraged by closing the road down to vehicles.
      It will add atmosphere like you said and be healthier fun for everyone.
      I agree with Charlotte Street being handed over to vendors and businesses at certain times of the day. But, with the traffic we have already in POS, we won’t be able to do that before the park and ride initiative is in full swing.
      I’d love to see it happen. But this country still obeys a 1979 speed limit. So change won’t come quickly for fear of being ticketed.

    • Lasana Liburd I agree a number of these suggestions need to be implemented in tandem. There needs to be a cohesive plan in place with a time table.

      As for closing Charlotte Street on “market days”, its already nearly impassable from 9AM until 6:30PM. Simply redirect that traffic down one of the other streets like Frederick and Abercromby.

      I also want to add that government should consider either incentives, or mandate that offices with more than a specific number of employees must provide on-premise day care facilities. In the U.S., the government did this by providing tax incentives to businesses. It created jobs, increased employee productivity, and created a safer environment for children who might otherwise be disrupting the office, be left at home alone, or wandering the streets unsupervised.

      One company I interviewed at created the daycare center in the lobby with glass walls so the children and day care workers could be observed. Security cameras were installed as well and the video feed streamed through the office network so employees could check up on their children any time without leaving their desks.

    • Rishi Maharaj is our expert on public sector reform. Rishi, how can we fare with these sharp ideas?

  18. Participatory democracy in action. Great job Alana Morton!

  19. Good points BUT if homeless persons could [hire lawyers] sue POS City Corp. [Today’s Express] to use Tamarind Square….POS in a real mess.

    • The less said about that the better…. what a poor use of ones time….these lawyers on ? idle they idle…..similar stunt by Ramesh &Co when they were moved off the streets!!! Hear nah our so called professionals are shaming us!!

  20. Crystal Ortiz we would hope so eh…..but ??? anyhooo…. very good suggestions Alana let’s hope that it doesn’t fall on deaf ears!!

  21. Congrats Alana this reminded me of something I told you some time back and I still believe it’s something you should ultimately do….great commonsense approach to basic issues that immediately impact ppl’s lives….I hope the Mayor and Local Govt Minister take note

  22. These are all excellent points. I’d go a step further and say all Styrofoam packaging should be banned aiming to address environmental concerns and flooding.

  23. great job amiga ! Alana Morton

  24. Alana Morton! At long last!

  25. ^ you’re being sarcastic, right Richard Khan ?

  26. Get rid of all those outsiders,quickly.

  27. The best to reform port of Spain is to bom it.

  28. Great suggestions which can be consolidated under the specific Ministries with timelines and accountabilities.

  29. I witness once a US Sanitation worker issuing a ticket to an apartment building for not packaging the garbage properly.

  30. I agree with almost every point. However i strongly feel street vending can be regulated and point 22 is already in place minus the recycling and delineation of waste by type.

    • I agree. Street vending can actually be a plus. I’m glad to hear that the City thinks so too.

    • I speak for myself Lasana Liburd and others feel the same. Vending is part of the world landscape. And in these modern times I do not think we need a steong arm approach but an understanding one that works with standards which allow for the coexsistance of street vending with other substantive institutions.

  31. Vagrancy! Move them to the pavement in front of RLM home.

    The same way they enforced the law for speeding they need to enforce the law for illegal vending.

  32. i jus joking i know her well i want to send this to a Sando councillor

  33. A regular contributor who is making her debut… Thanks Alana. And sorry for the delay.

  34. Certain parts of the city allow pedestrian traffic only

  35. Too many, and too good, ideas…. so naturally they will be ignored.